WWE has had one of the most turbulent weeks in the company's history. On April 9, the Florida Governor's office added "professional sports and media production" to the list of essential services in the state which has allowed WWE to tape live programming from the Performance Center in Orlando, Florida. It then emerged that Linda McMahon's Super PAC pledged to spend $18.5 million on broadcast advertising in the run-up to the 2020 presidential election. Both America First Action and Governor DeSantis have denied any link between the two events. On Wednesday, the company released 23 Superstars and furloughed nine producers along with other employees after they announced they would have to make cutbacks because of the coronavirus pandemic.
Some in the wrestling world have commented on the releases. Seth Rollins received heavy criticism for saying he found the hostility towards WWE upsetting, while Tommy Dreamer has also added his voice to the debate as he said people can't hate WWE or Vince McMahon for their decision.
AJ Styles also talked about the releases yesterday on his Mixer channel as he told viewers he doesn't understand fans who complain about WWE being designated as an essential business and then criticise the company for releasing people. "You can't have both," Styles said.
Estimates have shown that WWE would have still made record profits in 2020 without any cutbacks.
The former WWE Champion said: "With all the talk about WWE being essential television, I don't know whether it is or it isn't, but I know that I'm glad to be able to entertain, I'm glad to still be able to do my job. I still want to be able to do that.
"I don't understand people who complain about it and then go on and bury the company for releasing people. Like, you can't have both. We've got to be able to work and if you don't work, your business can't make money. So, you've got to be able to do that. I want to be able to work and I know that there’s risks involved and I've got to do whatever I can to make sure I hopefully don't contract that coronavirus, but I mean, it's hard to say. But there's so many things going on and so many different things going out there on like what the coronavirus is, Will it be gone? How Long? You don't know what to believe anymore. You don't know who to trust. It's just so bizarre right now."